Advented: day four

On-going series, once a day until Christmas, offering as its treat a book, film, piece of music or other worthy experience. Check them out. It’s my gift to you.

Day four – The Neverending Story

AtreyuReturning to the world of film, I proudly and without shame present my next advent gift: The Neverending Story. Stop sniggering at the back and let me persuade you to give it another try. Today’s Advented is the first one which I imagine might incur some disagreement; I’m aware that it is hardly regarded as being a classic. If you think that, you’re wrong and here’s why.

This is a film about reading, adapted from a book about a book. Perhaps, as an avid reader myself during my childhood, that’s the reason I so took to it. In some respects there are similarities between this and the Narnia series, but I think that the film differentiates itself well. Dating from 1984 its special effects are perhaps best described as charming rather than stunning, though such effects are only ever a means to an end anyway and that end here is possibly better served by puppets and miniatures than it would be with flashy CGI.

The film covers only half of the book, and whilst it is now sold together with its (disappointing) sequel, it seems to me a well-judged cut. Yes it’s melancholy, yes it could be better in many ways and yes, there’s that theme music — but I promise you it’s worth revisiting.


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